Children as young as 3 understand multi-digit numbers more than previously believed

From experience to meaning...

No, I’m not saying that we should start calculus at age 3, but this research shows that our toddlers are capable of more than we thought, although the key word is “some” if you read on. The researchers do think it can have implications for U.S. students who continue losing ground internationally in mathematics performance.

From the press release:

“Contrary to the view that young children do not understand place value and multi-digit numbers, we found that they actually know quite a lot about it,” said Kelly Mix, MSU professor of educational psychology and co-author on the study. “They are more ready than we think when they enter kindergarten.”

Understanding place value is the gateway to higher math skills such as addition with carrying, and there is a strong tie between place value skills in early elementary grades and problem-solving ability later on.

“In short, children who fail to master…

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